Depending on the severity, hepatitis B treatment consist of resting at home or being admitted to a hospital.
Home care for hepatitis B patients is mostly a matter of rest, hydration, and adequate nutrition. Fluids are essential, but hepatitis B sufferers may substitute juice or milk (for water) during periods when nausea makes eating difficult and nutrition levels fall.
There is no treatment for the acute phase of hepatitis B, because it like influenza and colds is caused by a virus. If hepatitis B advances to the chronic stage, there are prescription medications available and even newer ones in development.
However, over-the-counter (OTC) remedies and herbal supplements may do hepatitis B sufferers more harm than good. This is particularly true of the non-steroidal anti- inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) sold generically as ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, and aspirin. Questionable herbal cures for hepatitis B include chaparral and kombucha.
Doctors will also monitor a hepatitis patient’s prescription medication list, to temporarily remove any medicines that could be harmful to the liver. They will also strongly recommend hepatitis B patients abstain from alcohol, as this more than any other legal substance is hard on the liver. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, or CDC, excessive alcohol use continues to cost the American economy more than $250 billion a year, in terms of workplace productivity, crime, and the cost of healthcare.
Newer treatments for hepatitis B sufferers involve interferon and nucleoside analogs reverse transcriptase, or RT like entecavir and tenofovir. Clevudine, a thymidine analog, prevents both hepatitis B viral “protein priming” and the elongation of the DNA strand to allow hepatitis B viral synthesis. This nucleoside RT inhibitor process appears to be next wave in chronic hepatitis B treatments.
Until the perfect medicine comes along, people who work in medical environments, IV drug users, LGBT individuals, and those living with someone who has chronic hepatitis B, are advised get the hepatitis B vaccine, HBV, which is so far the only way to avoid hepatitis B.